Excuse me. I simply had to drool when I saw the roasted pork belly display at this new resto called Bellychon in Greenbelt 1. The skin looked so crispy, the meat so tender and it just reminds of the coming holiday season when the family tables will be festive and overladen with food. There’s just something about lechon which reminds one of a joyous Christmas in the Philippines!
The taste test didn’t disappoint. A rice meal with a generous serving of lechon for P120? bring it on!
I think this roasted pork belly originated among the South-based purveyors that made lechon Cebu famous. The only thing is that there’s no animal head or tail to contend with. The traditional method requires the roasting of the meat over open fire on a bamboo pole. But the good thing with pork belly is that it’s more manageable and you can do the cooking in the comfort of your home oven.
On this note, am reminded of a recipe shared by prominent Chef Myrna Segismundo at The Maya Kitchen a few months ago. She’s a book author and also helms Restaurant 9501 in Quezon City. Here’s her recipe for Boneless Lechon with Grilled Liver & Red Wine Sauce, Stewed Native Fruits – a truly gourmet treat!
1 pc. 14-21 days suckling pig, head and legs removed, deboned, trimmed and halved lengthwise (yield 2 – 3 kls)
½ cup Olive oil
pinch Salt and pepper
Fresh sampalok leaves
2 tbs. Garlic, minced
Butcher’s thread for tying
Preheat oven to 300ºF.
Brush both sides of the slabs of the deboned suckling pig with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Lay the half portion of the suckling pig with the flesh side up on a tray and line the center of each slab with sampalok leaves and garlic. Roll each of the pork slabs with both ends of the skin slightly overlapping each other to form a cylinder. Bind with butcher’s thread.
Roast the suckling pig in the preheated oven for 1 hour and baste with olive oil. Raise the temperature to 350º F and continue basting occasionally for another hour or until the lechon skin is golden brown. Remove from oven and rest on a tray. As the lechon cools down, it will start to get crisp. Remove the thread binding.
For the grilled liver and red wine sauce plus stewed native fruits, pls visit my recipe blog
Also check out my previous post: how to cook lechon in an oven, recipe from Mama Sita